Watching city hall debate animal issues is kind of like seeing someone at a drug store buying condoms.

They’re extremely self-conscious about it, but they’ve just got to do it.

So it was with extreme trepidation that council debated dropping dog licences last night. Some councillors think it’s more expensive than it’s worth.


Council has been freque­ntly lambasted for its seemingly endless rounds of cat bylaw debates.

Indeed, most councillors looked afraid to even say the word “cat” last night, with some stopping mid-sentence to avoid it.

But with time to renew dog licences coming up, some think hunting pe­ople down to renew is too costly.

“We’re wasting a hell of a lot of money on collecting licence fees. We could just make this easier if we don’t have to worry about it,” said East Dartmouth-The Lakes Coun. Andrew Younger.

There were only 6,700 licences given out to dogs in 2007, but that doubled last year when owners were given a “one-time” price of $10. While debating the pri­ce drop, some councillors felt it was a waste of time.

“If a responsible pet owner would take the initiative to put ... a little tag on their dog, that’d be the same effect as licensing without the ongoing costs,” said Spryfield-Herring Cove Coun. Steve Adams.

Deputy Mayor David Hendsbee said the whole renewal problem could be avoided with one-time registration for life. Then he dropped the C-bomb.

“I don’t understand why we can’t get something simple like this forwarded. On­ce you’re done with dogs in a productive way, then you extend it to cats,” he said.

The collective groan that followed was so loud Mayor Kelly had to order council to calm down.

Staff will come back with more data next week when the issue will be decided.

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